Palestinian Flag at the UN? Oh No! WHO CARES?

Here’s another piece of news that matters about as much to me, in the words of RJ Fletcher, “as a festering bowl of dog snot.”

The “Palestinian Flag” is about to waved at the UN. Oh boy. How exciting and important. The UN is the collection of the world’s worst human beings in one room. Those Jews who see some kind of religious meaning in UN recognition of statehood, as if that matters at all to anything, will be offended by this, just like right wing Christians are offended when gay people have a wedding ceremony, or just like Saudis are offended when women drive a car. These people look for things to be offended by while politicians steal their shirts.

I don’t care if gay people get married. I don’t care if Muslim women drive a car or go outside without their burkas. I do not care if a “Palestinian flag” is waved at some headquarters of a bunch of idiotic diplomats.

Wave this one. Here’s my flag. The Offensive Spangled Banner.

Gay Islamic-Christian Communazi Satan-Worshipping Pirates of the Confederate States of Israel
Gay Islamic-Christian Communazi Satan-Worshipping Pirates of the Confederate States of Israel

One Cheer for Moshe Kachlon – Lower Alcohol Taxes!

I’ve written a lot about Kachlon in the past and how much I can’t stand the guy. Notwithstanding all the damage he’s done already in raising all kinds of housing taxes, he actually did something good today and lowered alcohol taxes from 4.33 shekels per liter of beer to 2.33. He also lowered taxes on hard liquor from 106.9 shekels per liter of ethanol to 85 per liter.

This was the status quo ante 2012, when Yair Pretty Boy Lapid came into office, who I should mention is publicly know to have once been, and may still be, a raging alcoholic. Pretty Boy Lapid, seeing the light and crusading against alcoholism by making everyone who buys alcohol pay him more money, had the goal of lowering the consumption rate of alcohol in Israel.

And by some kind of miracle called markets and supply and demand (miracle to Lapid anyway), it didn’t work. Why not? Because it’s not that hard to brew your own alcohol. You can do it yourself with some grape juice, some yeast, and a Water distiller.

I used to buy Arak from time to time. I haven’t bought a single bottle since 2012. They will not get extra tax revenue from me. I can theoretically make my own Arak now with anise extract and all the above materials.

The politicians just figured this out, the idiots:

הצוות התייחס גם למיסוי המוטל על משקאות משכרים (כגון וודקה, וויסקי, עראק, ג’ין וכו’). מנכ”ל האוצר מסר לשר כי בחינת העלאת המס בשנים 2014-2015 הצביעה כי למרות התכנון המקורי, הרי שהעלאת מס הקנייה כלל לא הביאה לתוספת הכנסות במונחים ריאליים.

בהתאם להמלצות הצוות, נדרש שינוי מבני מיידי גם בשל ההתפתחויות השליליות בענף האלכוהול – התפתחות של תעשייה פיראטית שמייצרת משקאות מזיקים לבריאות, פגיעה בציבור העוסקים הישרים שנאלצים להתמודד עם שוק שחור בהיקפים לא מבוטלים ופגיעה בציבור הצרכנים בשל העלאת המס.

The committee also changed the tax level on hard drinks like vodka, whisky, arak and gin. The director of the finance department told Kachlon that the 2014-2015 tax raise showed that despite original planning (sic), raising the sales tax did not bring in additional tax revenue.

In keeping with the recommendations of the committee, an immediate change is needed due to the negative developments in the alcohol sector – the development of pirate manufacturing that can harm health, hurt the alcohol industry that needs to compete with a substantial black market, and hurting consumers who need to pay the higher tax.

And as an additional testament to the BS you often find in mainstream state-controlled media, here are two paragraphs. The second from the article about lowering the tax, and the first from an article when Lapid raised it.

מלשכת השר שטייניץ אמרו בתגובה לדברי לפיד על המס על האלכוהול: “בהמשך לדברי שר האוצר לפיד בנוגע להעלאת המס על האלכוהול האחרונה, אמר השר שטייניץ כי מעולם לא קיבל החלטה ולא התחייב לקבל החלטה לעלות את שיעור המס. במסגרת התהליך המבורך של קבלת ישראל ל-OECD הוסכם על שינוי שיטת המס החל משנת 2014, בהתאם למודל הנהוג במדינות הארגון. אולם, ההחלטה עצמה על גובה שיעור המס נותרה לשיקול דעתו של שר האוצר בלבד.

(Short translation: The rise in alcohol taxes is due to a deal with the OECD, which just accepted us yay, so we’re doing this as a favor to them, because they said so and we made a deal. And by the way, the actual level of the tax is only up to the Finance Minister, Pretty Boy Lapid, raising a big question about what the heck the first sentences of this paragraph about the OECD even means.)

And now for the article that just came out about lowering it back down:

רמת מיסוי הנהוגה כיום גבוהה משמעותית מזו הנהוגה במדינות ה-OECD. בחינת התוצאות של העלאת המס על בירה בשנים 2013-2015 הראתה כי למרות ההכפלה של המיסוי, הדבר כמעט ולא השפיע על היקפי הצריכה של בירה. המשמעות כי המס שהוטל בשנת 2012 הכביד על ציבור הצרכנים מבלי תרם באופן ממשי לעניין צמצום השתייה המזיקה.

Short translation: Taxes were lowered back down because they were much higher than the level accepted by the OECD. And tax revenue wasn’t increasing so there was no point.

You have to laugh at this. I hope Lapid falls off the wagon and goes binge drinking tonight. Maybe he’ll come down with the DT’s and have a near death experience, be saved in the emergency room and then retire. (I’m joking, I don’t wish him the DT’s.) I’ll fund his alcohol budget personally if he would just go away and stop passing any laws. I wish him well, and to leave me alone. As they say in Hebrew, תהיה בריא.

One cheer for Kachlon. Just one.

Politician-Dense Capital Cities Have the Most Ashley Madison Accounts Per Capita

Enough World War II revisionism for one day. Let’s move on to more fun politician bashing. Ashley Madison, the site that sets up married people to have discreet affairs was of course hacked a few weeks ago. I’m not sure what I think about that morally. On the one hand, affairs are not necessarily immoral provided there is mutual agreement for an open marriage. But in most cases they are immoral by breach of contract.

Preliminarily, I would say Ashley Madison is a legitimate site provided that it has a disclaimer that anyone who uses it does not legally breach their marriage contracts, whatever they may say. But I haven’t completely thought it through yet, so I am open to other opinions. Besides, I doubt the site had such a disclaimer.

In any case, I discovered today that the 4 cities with the most Ashley Madison accounts per capita, besides Ottawa where 1 in 5 residents has an account, are:

  1. Athens,
  2. Oslo,
  3. Berlin,
  4. And good old Washington D.C.

All capital cities where the highest densities of politicians and government workers hang out. To surf porn and plan affairs and regulate our lives ad infinitum. I can’t think of 4 cities I dislike more for their politicians, perhaps even in that very order.

It just goes to show, once again, that democracy puts the worst of the worst in charge, and whoever has political ambitions is a morally challenged human being until proven otherwise.

 

Nitzan Horowitz: Without Government, There Would be No Cultural Activities At All!

There’s this whole totally unnecessary controversy right now in Israel about some play about some Arab who kills some soldier and the State having to subsidize the play but not wanting to, and somehow not subsidizing a play with with tax money is tantamount to violating free speech.

If that’s so, what I’m doing right now is not free speech because the government isn’t paying me to do it. I can’t tell if the people who say these things are actually that stupid, or they are just incredibly dishonest. Probably a mix.

Then there’s another play about Yigal Amir somewhere that other people don’t want to be subsidized. And again, both sides hate each other.

Here’s an idea. Don’t subsidize any play whatsoever, and let people watch or not watch them, and leave us all alone. Ah, but then there will be no more plays at all, in fact no cultural activity at all, says Nitzan Horowitz! Wow!

Moshe’s pretty good in this one. Horowitz says something like “If you take away state money from cultural activities, you could say the same about education, housing, and everything else!”

Feiglin: Yes, exactly.

Horowitz: Then there will be nothing!

Feiglin: So you’re saying that if the Minister of Outer Space suddenly resigned, then the cosmos would stop existing.

Now that’s good stuff.

Only one objection. Feiglin says that no one should be forced to subsidize any plays, and Horowitz correctly says that he shouldn’t be forced to pay for settlers. That’s a good point, and Horowitz is correct there.

Moshe tries to answer with a non-sequitur, saying that he doesn’t pay for settlers because settlers are more productive than other sectors. But that’s nonsense. He pays for their protection and everything else public in Judea and Samaria regardless of how productive they are, and he shouldn’t have to because he has a moral problem with where they live. Moshe can’t say that though because then he becomes an anarcho capitalist so he has to say something illogical to keep his minarchy intact.

The other nutty thing about this video was the subtitle that appears around minute 4: “Privatization of Culture: A good solution or morally bankrupt?”

Privatization of culture is morally bankrupt of course. Before the State, there was no culture. First there were people who were in charge of everyone who told the little people who they stole from how to do culture. Then they did culture. Without governments, there would be no culture, and we’d basically be monkeys. Yeah. Sounds right. Sometimes I can’t stop thinking how sick this State is.

 

Headline of the Year: Gennimata easily beats off competition to become first woman to head PASOK

Great stuff. Love the picture too. And her name, Fofi.

Gennimata easily beats off competition to become first woman to head PASOK

Fofi beats off competition
Fofi beats off competition
Fofi Gennimata took over as the first female leader in PASOK’s history on Monday after comfortably seeing off her two male competitors to secure the presidency of the beleaguered Socialist party.

The ex-minister immediately said that she would seek to rebuild the once-mighty party and would begin a dialogue with other groups on the center-left of Greek politics. Although she did not name them, her comments suggest that she will reach out to Democratic Left, which was part of the coalition government between 2012 and 2013, and the Movement of Democratic Socialists launched by ex-PASOK chief George Papandreou in January.

Reminds me of this great blooper:

 

My Last Word On Greece Until they Leave the Euro

The back and forth on Greece is starting to drive even me nuts. As we get closer to the deadline of reality (whenever that is), the Greek government – the entire Eurozone really – is acting more and more like a cornered animal, changing its tune and tone every hour instead of every day. It’s getting nuts, and I can’t believe any stories that come out of there anymore.

One hour Greece has a deal. The next hour the IMF is pissed as hell. Then Tsipras is groping Merkel and then Varoufakis is growling at Scheuble, then some Greek unknown official named Somethingopalous Flabargatopolous says something very hopeful, but Jean Claude Van Dam Juncker says “we have to hurry” and Christine Lagarde gets hot flashes while Jeroen Djisselbooger says Greece’s plan is not credible, but talks were “extremely friendly”.

This is a term I’ve actually seen a lot. “Extremely friendly”. Does anyone not an an asylum use that term? “Extremely friendly”? Extreme friends, sounds like a reality show where two friends go into the Outback and see if they can survive dehydration and kangaroo attacks.

I have never been “extremely friendly” with anybody. It sounds frightening.

So whatever happens, happens. I’m done. Everything is smokescreens now. As we get even closer, the story will change by the minute.